Not many people know the name Mika Pyorala. But they may want to learn.
On day one of Flyers’ training camp at the Skate Zone in Voorhees, N.J., Philadelphia coach John Stevens paired 28-year old Pyorala on a line with Scott Hartnell and Jeff Carter. With a healthy number of hopeful forwards looking to make an impression, no one expect the move to stick. But it did.
“They are very offensive guys that get a lot of points,” said Pyorala (PURE-ella), who will likely be matched up with the same line in the team’s first preseason game Wednesday in Detroit. “I know if I am going to play with them I have to try to balance the lines because I’m a defensive player.”
According to hockeybuzz.com blogger Matthew Barry, despite acquiring big-name forward Ryan Smyth to help bolster the offense, the Kings are still looking to add a “gritty winger” to the mix. And from what a source tells Barry, LA has its eye focused hard on Flyers’ forward Scott Hartnell.
Is there anyone better at heating up a rivalry than Rangers forward Sean Avery? Avery was booked on the Jimmy Fallon show Monday night, promoting his charity Career Gear, which recycles suits to give to people in need. During the interview, Avery mentioned he attended the Bonnaroo music festival in Tennessee, and that his camp, during the multi-day hippee party, was located directly next where Joffrey Lupul and some other Flyers were staying.
Avery recalled back to the final game of the regular season between the Flyers and Rangers, where Lupul crosschecked Avery from behind after the whistle. Avery turned around and went after the first player in orange and black, which happened to be Scott Hartnell. Hartnell tried to fight Avery, but slipped backwards.
Avery said that he and Lupul “Hugged it out,” but that Hartnell is “A bit of a clown.”
If the youtube.com link breaks, I will try to track down the interview on Hulu as soon as it’s posted.
Coach John Stevens told the media this morning that he expects forwards Scott Hartnell and Claude Giroux to play tonight against the Florida Panthers, at the Wachovia Center at 7 p.m. Hartnell was sent home from practice yesterday with a serious case of pink eye and Giroux underwent tests to find a possible stomach ulcer. The tests were negative, but it did reveal he has some acid reflux issues and he will be fine.
“He looked pretty bad,” Joffrey Lupul said of Hartnell’s eyeball. “Worse than normal.”
Giroux told the media that the stomach pain he has felt for days now does not affect his on-ice play, as he doesn’t even notice it when he’s playing.
“I went to the doctor just to check it out. I’ll be fine,” he said. “It didn’t really matter when I was playing. When I’m on the ice, I don’t think about it.”
The Philadelphia Flyers have reported that forward Scott Hartnell missed practice today, with what is being described as a case of pink eye, or conjunctivitis. The odd, child-like illness is a viral infection of the eye that takes 3-5 days to recover. No medicines are typically prescribed, as it is not serious.
Claude Giroux and Riley Cote also missed practice. Giroux’s absence has not be explained, but it shouldn’t be assumed it’s injury related. Cote is still battling a damaged finger, which he suffered against the Boston Bruins and aggravated in the first Toronto game.
The Flyers had their team picture taken today. They wore orange jerseys as shown here in Kevin Kurz’s On the Fly Twitter.
INJURY UPDATE: Giroux has been dealing with stomach pain for a number of days. He was getting checked out by the doctor today, for what seems like some sort of acid reflux problem.
During the 2007-08 Stanley Cup playoffs, uber Penguins’ fan Steven Mazefsky, like thousands of others, had a jersey customized. But unlike having Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin sewn on the back, Mazefsky had a Flyers jersey customized. With hate in his heart and apparently extra money to spend, Mazefsky had the jersey embroidered with the number 19 and the name “Fartsmell” sewn on, in an attempt to mock Flyers’ forward Scott Hartnell.
” I had this special jersey made so that I could attempt to irritate the subject of my aggravation as much as possible from my vantage point right next to the visitors’ tunnel,” Season ticket holder Mazefsky told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette blog Empty Netters. “Last year, the mission was accomplished!”
Ryan Bright (Philabright@gmail.com) is a sports writer, born and raised in the Philadelphia area. A graduate of West Chester University, he has been with the Daily Local News in Chester County since early 2007, working as the paper's college and high school ice hockey beat writer. In 2010, began as a contributer for CSNPhilly.com, covering the Flyers and the Philadelphia Union.